Cracked surface on cake – Cause and prevention

I bake a cake today. I used about 250 grams of each item and used a 8-inch round cake tin. You can find the butter cake recipe over here.

I pour the batter into the 8-inch cake tin and leave some behind because I do not want the batter to be more than half the height of the cake tin.

butter cake

This is the first cake which does not crack at the top. It has nice golden brown. I bake the cake at 180 deg. celcius for about 40-50 minutes.

butter cake

The cake rise up just nice without being too ‘high’.

Meanwhile, I have a small portion left over in the mixing bowl. Normally, I will bake the balance in paper cups to make cupcakes. However, I didn’t do that. Instead, I used a very small tin about 4-inch in diameter and pour the rest of the batter inside. My little boy call it the ‘mama cake’ and the ‘baby cake’.

cracked surface

This is what happened when you put too much batter into a cake tin. The cake will rise and eventually cracked into an ugly eruption.

It won’t cook within the time limit. The sides will be browned while the middle portion is still wet and unbaked. By the time the middle portion is fully cooked, the cake will be too dry.

cracked surface

So, never put the batter more than half the height of your baking tin if you aim to get a lovely, even surface cake. And if you ended up with such surface, you can always hide it with some icing sugar, butter cream or some fruits.

Then again, certain cupcakes look nice with these sort of patterns of cracked surface. I have watched one cook show where they purposely allow the batter to overflow out of the muffin tin and they call it ‘the tongue’ as the overflow batter looks like tongues.

I have more tips on avoiding lousy cakes in my marble cake recipe post.

Post Author: Lilian

Food, travel, recipes. Chinese Malaysian, blogger, photographer and writer.

10 thoughts on “Cracked surface on cake – Cause and prevention

    Momo

    (September 30, 2008 - 9:13 pm)

    Lilian, I do not avoid lousy cake, I eat it!End of lousy cake.

    Usually,cake only lousy to look at but still taste very very good.

    Estrelita Soliano Gr

    (September 30, 2008 - 11:08 pm)

    Enjoyed reading your other blog then I discovered you also have this. What a discovery for me!!!!

    Great stuff. I’m a fan now!

    Ean

    (October 1, 2008 - 12:41 am)

    very excited to found the way to bake a nice cake. i love butter cake very much, but i have tried many recipis, i still can’t make a very successful butter cake. i always turn out too dry, and the cake drops whenever i cut.

    i used 5 eggs, 250 self raising flour, 250 butter, half cup of milk, 200 sugar.

    it is too dry..so sad

    Lilian

    (October 1, 2008 - 1:12 am)

    Ean – You just need to cut down one egg and use less milk. I guarantee it will turn out great. You see, the eggs give it ‘artificial rise’ and the milk made it too damp, yet dry when the cake is cool down. You just add a few tablespoons until the batter can drop nicely without looking too stiff. When you tilt your mixing bowl, the batter should be flowing (but not too watery) into the baking pan. If it refuse to ‘flow’ just add a bit more milk.

    Momo – Yalor, the cracked surface one tastes better than the fluffier nice one.

    allenooi

    (October 1, 2008 - 11:20 am)

    I want to try baking cake one day. I have the oven in my house but never use it since bought. I must fully utilize it!

    Food Made Simple

    (October 2, 2008 - 12:21 am)

    Thanks Lilian, That’s a great tip especially since I do want to start baking more. 🙂 But since I started baking, I realised that I am consuming so much sugar and egg and butter…… 🙁

    san

    (October 2, 2008 - 12:02 pm)

    My cake ‘erupts’ every time I bake. Will take note of your advice. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Ean

    (October 2, 2008 - 9:41 pm)

    hi Lilian, yes, i am going to try it soon.

    why do you prefer to use the spoon to mix the flour , eggs & milk and not the the electronic mixer?

    Ean

    (October 9, 2008 - 10:41 pm)

    yes! i have tried it with 4 eggs, it taste great!

    Thanks Lilian.

    Lilian

    (October 10, 2008 - 1:41 am)

    Ean – Great that my tips helps. Actually, I do use the electric mixer but after you have completed the butter/sugar mixing, it is better to use a wooden spoon to fold in the flour and egg because too much beating will make your cake too ‘airy’ and the texture is very ‘smooth’. I prefer a rougher texture.

    san – Hope you get a pretty ‘cake face’ next time.

    foodmadesimple – Bake and then, fast fast give to friends lor. Take one bite will do. 😛

    allen – Yes, do bake. Men’s style of baking will give different taste lah. I see my son beat beat so easily, his cake also turned out nice.

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